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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Charles Dickens Coffee House London

Charles Dickens was born 200 years ago. Dickens created some of the best-known figures in English literature including Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and Pip. Dickens is buried in Westminster Abbey's Poets' Corner, among other literary giants such as Geoffrey Chaucer, Alfred Tennyson and Thomas Hardy.

The Charles Dickens Coffee House in London's Covent Garden is on the ground floor of the building that was the office of All The Year Round, a magazine Dickens founded to publish his stories. At the peak of Dickens' popularity, crowds would gather outside to wait for the latest episode.

Charles Dickens Coffee House London UK

Dickens lodged in rooms above the office in the late 1860s for a few years before his death in 1870.

Nowadays, the Charles Dickens Coffee House serves a variety of light meals as well as sandwiches, snacks and beverages. Outdoor seating is available, weather permitting.

Charles Dickens Coffee House

The Charles Dickens Coffee House is located on Wellington Street in Covent Garden, London. Visitors to London may also want to visit other Dickens' haunts such a Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese Pub or The George Inn.

26 Wellington Street
Covent Garden
Tel: 020 7379 7727

Charles Dickens Coffee Shop map

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Hotels and Guesthouses in London UK

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Ye Olde Nag's Head Castleton

For a small village in the Peak District Castleton is blessed with some good pubs including the Bull's Head pub and The George.

Another local favorite in Castleton is Ye Olde Nag's Head a former stone coaching inn dating from the 17th century.

Ye Olde Nag's Head offers a full English breakfast from 8am-11am every morning and a wide range of food on offer at other times of the day including Fish and Chips, meat dishes, vegetarian and children's meals.

Ye Olde Nag's Head Castleton, Derbyshire

Cask ales on tap include Timothy Taylors and Black Sheep as well as Westons cider to be enjoyed in rooms with real log fires.

Ye Olde Nag's Head offers 10 bedrooms ranging in price from 50 to 80 GBP a night some with antique four-poster beds and all en-suite.

Other places to see in and around the Castleton area in Derbyshire include the Hope Valley, Peveril Castle, Buxton, Eyam Hall, Eyam Stocks, Mam Tor, Winnats Pass, Edale, Hathersage, the Blue John mines and the picturesque Hope Valley.

Ye Olde Nag's Head
Cross Street
Hope Valley
S33 8WH
Tel: 01433 620248
Map of Castleton

Hotels and Guesthouses in Britain

Monday, November 19, 2012

Blackstocks Fish & Chips Chester

Blackstocks in Chester is well-known locally for its excellent fish and chips.

Blackstocks Fish & Chips Chester Cheshire

As well as fish and chips, Blackstocks offers chicken nuggets, pies and premium sausages.

The interior is spacey and has a contemporary eye-catching design.

33 Northgate Street
Chester CH1 2HQ
Open seven days a week
11.30am - 7.45pm Sunday to Thursday
11.30am - 8.45pm Friday and Saturday

Things to see in Chester include the Roman Amphitheater, the Roman Gardens, Grosvenor Park, the River Dee, St John's Church, the Meadows, Chester Cathedral and the Rows.

Chester's pubs include the riverside Boathouse, Ye Olde King's Head and the Victoria at the Cross.

Hotels and Guesthouses in Chester UK

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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Why Is Britain Getting Fatter?

British waistlines have expanded considerably since the 1960s. Indeed government figures show that 25% of British adults are considered clinically obese, making the Brits the fattest nation in Europe followed by Italy, France and Germany.

Obese Britain

The national diet of full English breakfasts, beer and fish and chips may not help along with a climate that keeps people stuck indoors in front of an admittedly decent TV offering.

The decline of the specialist shop and the subsequent growth of out-of-town supermarkets have seen British people increasingly drive to shop and buying in larger and larger quantities of food and drink.

This deadly mix of gluttony and sloth has meant clinical obesity levels have doubled in the UK in the last decade.

Why Britain Getting Fatter?

In the fat league of British cities London is the slimmest with Birmingham ranking as the fattest.

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Saturday, November 17, 2012

British Pillar Boxes

The red pillar box is a veritable icon of the UK's streets. The first pillar boxes started to appear in Britain in the mid-nineteenth century for the collection of mail.

British Post Boxes

The very first pillar box was erected in Carlisle in 1859 and over the following years the initial design changed from green to its now distinctive red,  a colour which has been adopted by many other countries including Japan, India, Canada, Mexico, South Africa, Italy and Argentina.

British Pillar Box, Chester

Britain's post boxes often display the initials of the reigning monarch at the foot of the pillar box. The first pillar boxes were made in cast iron though today other materials are used such as glass fibre and plastic.

Post Box and Telephone Box

As well as pillar boxes, some post boxes in the UK are built into walls and in large cities such as London double pillar boxes collect both ordinary and franked mail. Collection times are noted on the front of the box. The British Postal Museum Store in Essex has a large collection of historic pillar boxes.

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Traveller's Call Pub Great Moor Stockport

Located on the A6 on the 192 bus route to Stepping Hill Hospital from Stockport and Manchester, the Traveller's Call pub is well-known for its fine local Robinson's beer.

Traveller's Call Pub, Stockport

At the back of the pub is a cobbled beer garden with a number of oddities including a classic red phone box. The interior is cozy and woody. The Traveller's Call is within easy pub crawl of the nearby Crown. There's an historic painted pub sign on the side of the building on Cherry Tree Lane.

Further attractions in the Stockport area of Greater Manchester include Stockport Town Hall, Stockport Air Raid Shelters, St Mary's Church, Bramhall Hall, Woodbank Park, Vernon Park, Stockport Market, Fred Perry's birthplace, Woodbank Park, the Viaduct, the Hat Works and Stockport Art Gallery.

Traveller's Call Pub Great Moor Stockport.


Traveller's Call
351 Buxton Road
Great Moor
Tel: 0161 456 6550
Map of Traveller's Call

There is another Traveller's Call pub on Stockport Road in Bredbury. Just across the A6 is Ashton's Fish & Chip Shop.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

MediaCityUK Manchester

MediaCityUK in the Salford Quays area of Manchester close to The Lowry, The Lowry Outlet Mall, and the Imperial War Museum North is a large new development in this canal side area.

Quay House, Media City UK

MediaCityUK on the Manchester Ship Canal is now home to BBC North (BBC Breakfast, Children's TV, Sport including Match of the Day, Learning, Radio 5 Live and Future Media and Technology), various ITV departments, media related faculties of the University of Salford, Satellite Information Services Ltd (SIS) and a new Holiday Inn Hotel.

MediaCityUK, Salford, Manchester

The development also includes residential property in the form of 378 apartments and a number of shops and restaurants: WH Smith, Costa and a branch of the Japanese-style noodle chain Wagamama are some of the tenants.

Work began on the site in 2007 with the first stage of construction completed in 2011. MediaCityUK utilizes a gas-powered tri-generation energy plant using water from the ship canal for heating and cooling the buildings.

Quay House, MediaCityUK, Manchester

The nearest Metrolink station is MediaCityUK or Harbour City - take a tram from Piccadilly Station on the Eccles Line. The #9 bus links Salford Crescent rail station and Salford Shopping City with MediaCityUK and The Lowry at Salford Quays.

Other attractions within the cities of Manchester and Salford include the Canal Street Gay VillageKing StreetChinatown, the Arndale CenterUrbis, the Royal Exchange Theatre and Manchester Cathedral.

MediaCityUK Manchester UK

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

London To Manchester Trains

London Euston to Manchester Piccadilly Station is one of the UK's busiest rail connections connecting the capital, London to Manchester, the largest city in the north west of England.

London To Manchester Virgin Trains

The rail franchise is currently held by Richard Branson's Virgin despite a seeming setback earlier this year when the lucrative West Coast route was initially awarded to FirstGroup in August only to be later reversed by the government.

London To Manchester Trains

The current West Coast Line runs between London Euston and Manchester Piccadilly and between Euston and Liverpool Lime Street with connections to Watford, Milton Keynes, Rugby, Nuneaton, Tamworth, Lichfield, Stafford, Crewe, Runcorn, Stoke, Macclesfield and Stockport.

London To Manchester Trains Map

Journey times for the fastest express trains between Euston and Manchester Piccadilly are just over two hours as are the fastest connections between Euston and Liverpool Lime Street.

Euston Station is on the Victoria and Northern lines of the London Underground and a short walk from Euston Square Station on the Circle, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines. Piccadilly Station connects to the Manchester metrolink.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Bollington Cheshire

A short drive from Macclesfield and its silk museums is the former mill town of Bollington.

Bollington was a centre of cotton production with the Swindells family building the Clarence and Adelphi mills in the town.

Stone Railway Viaduct, Bollington Cheshire

The Macclesfield, Bollington and Marple Railway was opened in 1869 as an alternative route from Manchester to Macclesfield until its closure in 1970. The former track is now a linear park popular with hikers, walkers, joggers and cyclists. An impressive 23-arch stone viaduct over the River Dean was saved from demolition by a local campaign and forms part of the Middlewood Way of Route 55 of the National Cycle Network.

Bollington, Cheshire

The Macclesfield Canal connects Bollington and Macclesfield running over the impressive Bollington Aqueduct and past the Clarence and Adelphi mills.

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Macclesfield Silk Museum

Macclesfield has a long association with the silk industry and that history can best be understood by a visit to Macclesfield Silk Museum.

The museum traces the development of silk production from its earliest beginnings in China and charts the growth of the silk industry in Macclesfield, which at one time was the world's leading producer of finished silk from its over 70 working silk mills.

Macclesfield Silk Museum, Cheshire

On display are silk costumes, machinery for making silk thread and even a silk parachute.

Macclesfield Silk Museum, Cheshire

Macclesfield has other sites dedicated to its silk heritage including the Silk Industry Museum located in what was the Macclesfield School of Art, which trained designers for the silk trade and the restored Paradise Mill complete with 26 Jacquard Looms on the top floor. The one hour guided tour introduces the industrial process of silk weaving and gives an impression of 1930s' factory life.

Macclesfield Silk Museum displays

Macclesfield Silk Museum
The Heritage Centre
Roe Street
Macclesfield SK11 6UT
Tel: 01625 613210

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Lyme Park Lyme Hall & Gardens

Lyme Park with its hall and gardens is one of the major attractions near Manchester on the fringes of the Peak District.

Lyme Park Lyme Hall & Gardens, Cheshire

Lyme Park in Disley has grounds of over 1300 acres and was owned by the Legh Family from the late 14th century before being acquired by the National Trust in 1946. The extensive grounds are home to both red and fallow deer and a walk up to the Cage (overlooking the main house) gives the visitor a good chance to see the deer from this elevated spot.

Lyme Hall & Gardens

Lyme Hall is the largest building in Cheshire and a Grade I listed building. The house's heyday was in the Edwardian period and the restored buildings and delightful gardens attempt to remind visitors of those times.

The original house was extended by the Venetian architect Giacomo Leoni in the 1720s and underwent further work and restorations into the 20th century.

Lyme Hall & Gardens, Lyme Park, Disley

The formal gardens include a Dutch Garden created by William Legh with formal flower beds around a central fountain. There is also an orangery designed by architect Lewis Wyatt in the 1800s, a reflection lake, lawns, rhododendrons and rose gardens. The exterior of Lyme Hall was used during the filming of the BBC adaptation of Jane Austen's classic Pride and Prejudice in 1995.

The main entrance to Lyme Park is ½ mile from Disley Station on the line to Buxton from Manchester Piccadilly and Stockport Station. By car the main entrance is on the A6 and there are buses from both Buxton and Stockport.

Lyme Park near Disley

Lyme Park
SK12 2NR
Tel: 01663 762023

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Friday, November 9, 2012

St Peter's Church Prestbury

St Peter's Church, opposite the Legh Arms in the Cheshire village of Prestbury, is an historic church with lovely stained glass windows and an atmospheric graveyard.

St Peter's Church Prestbury, Cheshire

St Peter's is a Grade I listed building and the churchyard contains a Norman chapel.

St Peter's Church Prestbury, Cheshire

Parts of the present church date from the early 13th century, which has been enlarged and restored over the following centuries. The churchyard contains some ancient yew trees and a sundial built in 1672.

St Peter's Church Prestbury, UK

St Peter's Prestbury
Parish Office
Flat 1, Swanwick House
SK10 4DG
Tel: 01625 827625

St Peter's Church Prestbury, UK

Buses 19 and 19X run from Prestbury to Macclesfield; Prestbury Station is on the Manchester Piccadilly via Macclesfield to Stoke-on-Trent railway line.

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